Social media is perceived as a Web 2.0 development, which is to say that it is founded on the concept of a user-driven, interactive web. Blogs, message boards and chat rooms provide an experience that could be described as social media, but the term is more strongly identified with sites like Twitter, Facebook, Digg, LinkedIn, and so on. Like many buzzwords, the meaning of social media is a moving target that gets shifted around according to what the person using it wants it to mean.
Social media marketing (SMM) refers to techniques that target social networks and applications to spread brand awareness or promote particular products. Social media marketing campaigns usually center around:
Establishing a social media presence on major platforms
Creating shareable content and advertorials
Cultivating customer feedback throughout the campaign through surveys and contests
Social media marketing is perceived as a more targeted type of advertising and is therefore believed to be very effective in creating brand awareness.
Social media presence is a necessity for many customer-driven enterprises as it gives the impression of a more immediate connection between the customer and the seller. Moreover, campaigns spread through social media are believed to have more resonance because they are usually discovered through links shared by trusted sources. The rich data available through social media can allow advertisers to target their message to very specific audiences, providing the potential for better results.